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July retail sales fall 11.4%

The value of total retail sales in July, provisionally estimated at $34.4 billion, fell 11.4% compared with the same month a year ago, the Census & Statistics Department announced today.


After netting out the effect of price changes over the period, the volume of total retail sales decreased by 13% year-on-year.


The value of jewellery sales, watches and clocks, and valuable gifts fell 24.4%.


This was followed by sales of wearing apparel (-13% in value); medicines and cosmetics (-16.1%); commodities in department stores (-10.4%); food, alcoholic drinks and tobacco (-2.3%); other consumer goods, not elsewhere classified (-1.4%); electrical goods and other consumer durable goods, not elsewhere classified (-17.4%); motor vehicles and parts (-5.8%); fuels (-0.1%); footwear, allied products and other clothing accessories (-10.1%); books, newspapers, stationery and gifts (-6%); furniture and fixtures (-8.7%); Chinese drugs and herbs (-5.8%); and optical shops (-17.8%).


The sales value of commodities in supermarkets went up 1%.


The Government said retail sales worsened, reflecting the weak local consumer sentiment and significant disruptions to inbound tourism and consumption-related activities arising from the recent local social incidents.


It also said retail sales would likely stay weak in the near term, as escalated US-Mainland trade tensions and subdued economic conditions continue to dampen consumer sentiment.


The situation may even deteriorate if the social incidents involving violence do not stop, the Government said, adding it will closely monitor the situation.

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